Belén Ceja

Belén Ceja

Aldina Vineyards (Winemaker)

Belén Ceja was destined to become a winemaker. Growing up, she was surrounded by vineyards in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys and is the daughter of winemaker and winery owner, Armando Ceja. As she says, "My family has been in the wine industry for years. Both of my grandfathers were a part of the Bracero Program (Immigrant Farm Worker Program) in the late 1950's and early 60's. At a young age my dad worked in the vineyards and grew up having a passion for it. As a little girl I was and forever will be a farmer's daughter, walking with my dad though the all stages of the vineyards from pruning, frost, harvest and winemaking."

After working for two years in the tasting room of Ceja Vineyards while earning an Associate of Arts degree from Santa Rosa Junior College, Belén completed a B.A.Sc. degree in Viticulture and Enology at California State University, Fresno, in 2013. She gained additional winemaking experience by doing cellar work for over four years as an intern at Enkidu Wines in Sonoma. In 2013, she became winery supervisor/enologist for Heirs of My Vision Winery, a custom-crush facility, and three years later was named to her present position of Director of Wine Production. She is also the winemaker for Aldina Vineyards in Santa Rosa.

Belén says that her father has been her most important mentor, yet he did not push her into the wine industry. In fact, he tried to persuade her not to enter it! Thanks to him, however, she attributes her work ethic, drive, and dreams to his influence on her.

She, her husband, and Balú, the family dog, currently live in Emeryville. Her favorite “hobby” is traveling to Playa Del Carmen as frequently as her winemaking responsibilities allow.